Do you ever wonder where violinists get it from? Or was there always some element of luck? Have you ever looked at a violin and wondered how the string came into its current form? It is an incredibly complicated process, not so much from where the string is cut down to where it is wound up, but from where it gets into the strings! The string is cut off with a machine called a lathe, the string is then re-cut, which is done by a fine wick on a very strong needle, and is usually repeated by hand over and over again. The result is a very thin string with sharp edge, often covered up by a thick wick. The violin plays a complex pattern over the entire range of the string, from the pitch of each note, to the length of each note, to the distance in meters between each note, and the vibrato which gives a musical effect.
Why do people prefer high strings rather than low?
In a classical violin concerto, the tone may vary from string to string, but not to the same degree. If the strings were high, the notes would all be in concert; if they were low, they would sound ‘peaked’. The reason for this is that high strings move the voice from bottom to top, while low strings move the voice from mid tone down the scale. Also, a violin made with high strings would have to be played close to a low note to reach a proper ‘warm’ tone. This creates the sound that is perceived as louder, as opposed to the ‘bassy’ sound perceived on low strings.
In the case of a string player, the voice does not move enough for the high pitch to make a big difference in the sound. The fact that a person can play the same notes with both low and high strings has nothing to do with the quality of the material of which the strings are made or the particular way they’re wound. It has to do with the fact that the voice is moving away from the notes to the tune of the music being played. This is because of this, that a low string has a lower pitched pitch than a high.
Will there be ‘vintage’ violin strings?
Vintage string quality is very variable. Many violins produced by old makers might have very poor quality. For this reason, a new string may have many of the notes of the vintage.
Can you make a high-quality violin?
No, although there are
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